Dec. 19 (UPI) — The Senate Banking Committee on Tuesday voted against confirming President Donald Trump‘s nominee to lead the Export-Import Bank, as two Republicans joined Democrats in rejecting the former congressman.
The panel voted 13-10 to not advance the nomination of Scott Garrett, who represented New Jersey’s 5th House district before he was defeated in last year’s general election.
Boeing and General Electric are two biggest beneficiaries of financing from the bank.
Garrett said during the confirmation hearing he would let the bank “continue to fully operate.”
During his confirmation hearing, senators questioned Garrett about his efforts to disband the bank as a member of Congress.
“I think that strong desire on his part to see [the bank] abolished as an example of crony capitalism would not have worked in the operation of the bank,” Rounds said.
“So while I wish him no ill, I do believe that he was not the right person to be the chairman. I think the other individuals who are here will be reformers. I think they’ll work together to make the bank better and more user-friendly to the vast majority of American businesses who need this economic development tool.”
Scott said, “We need to both reform the Export-Import Bank and ensure it continues to function as an important tool for American businesses. Given Mr. Garrett’s long history opposing the Ex-Im Bank, I believe it would be hard for him to accomplish both of those goals.”
The committee approved the four other nominees to serve on the board board — Kimberly Reed, Spencer Bachus, Judith Pryor and Claudia Slacik. Their confirmations would give Ex-Im a quorum for the first time in two years. Then-Chairman Richard Shelby of Alabama refused to consider former President Barack Obama‘s nominees for the board.
White House Legislative Affairs Director Marc Short said in a statement they will “work with the committee on a path forward.”
“We are disappointed that the Senate Banking Committee missed this opportunity to get the Export Import Bank fully functioning again,” Short said.